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Rider in the distance.. Am i the only one..

sancho_uksancho_uk Posts: 141
edited February 2013 in Road beginners
Hi All,

So I have been road cycling for a grand total of 2 weeks now :)

3 actual road rides in total and alot of Turbo Trainer sessions whilst the ice and snow are about. My fitness is generally pretty good anyway as i do a lot of running and sports and i guess this is where my below problem may come in...

I find myself ridiculously competitive.. for instance i went out with a group of friends and come the end (bare in mind they have all been cycling a lot longer on the road) I was out of puff and holding them up. To me this wasnt acceptable hence the tubo trainer and really putting myself through the paces.. I do enjoy doing this though so its not a bad thing :)

Even when im out on my own though if i see a rider in the distance, I make it my mission to catch them up.. Is this wrong? Should i just stick to the pace i was going at? Does anyone else do this?

In all honesty I really enjoy trying to chase someone down, but at the same time i understand it could be deemed as a little childish.. Whats the general consensus on this behaviour?
Focus Cayo 2.0 Ultegra 2012
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Posts

  • jp1970jp1970 Posts: 134
    chase every time !!!!!.. unless it's a tw*t on a electric bike who you have spent the last two miles trying to catch up with.
  • ProssPross Posts: 31,649
    It's instinctive to push that bit harder when you can see someone. The problem is that once you catch them and pass generally you don't get away from them so you either:-

    a) Have to put in a big burst before you catch them so that you get an instant gap (which makes you look a bit daft)
    b) Have them sat on your wheel for miles as you struggle to hold the effort you put in to catch them in the first place (which makes you look a bit daft).

    As the rider getting caught it can be quite frustrating when someone catches and passes you and then ends up riding slightly slower than you were before once they get in front. It can feel like you are being dragged into an unwilling race.

    Of course, it may be that you easily catch them and pass quickly enough that you just pull away which is what we all want to do!
  • nevmannevman Posts: 1,611
    Catch them,exchange a few pleasantries,then shout `see ya` and have the courtesy to pull away leaving both of you with dignity.Unless you are racing in which case kill them off.
    Whats the solution? Just pedal faster you baby.

    Summer B,man Team Carbon LE#222
    Winter Alan Top Cross
    All rounder Spec. Allez.
  • MattyyPMattyyP Posts: 142
    I know what you mean... I have this problem too, but I just tell myself to "Ride my own ride", for all I know the bloke/lady i'm trying to catch up with is out on a quick ten mile circuit where as i'm normally out for 30-50 miles. The key is to not expend all your energy for some ego boost, instead, enjoy your ride :)
    Specialized Secteur Sport 2011
    B'Twin Rockrider 8 XC
    B'Twin Rockrider 9.1
  • ShutUpLegsShutUpLegs Posts: 3,522
    sancho_uk wrote:
    I find myself ridiculously competitive..

    Enter some races
  • Most do that to some extent, I quite often get passed after the 2nd zag up Box Hill on the SS by slower roadies who then die on the drag to the last bend and I end up either soft peddling or passing...depends how nice I'm feeling!
  • philwintphilwint Posts: 763
    MattyyP wrote:
    for all I know the bloke/lady i'm trying to catch up with is out on a quick ten mile circuit where as i'm normally out for 30-50 miles.

    Or they are on the back of a 100m epic and I'm just out for a quick blast, so never let your ego get the better of you 8)
  • Yes, I'm the same. Either trying to catch up, or trying not to be caught up - while pretending not to be trying obviously.

    Then there are the blokes that come past me so fast that I unclip, assuming I've actually stopped. I don't bother trying to stay with them.
    Is the gorilla tired yet?
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,306
    I find it quite tiresome to be riding with 'competitive' people who insist on chasing everyone down in the distance and blitzing every strava segment they find. So I don't...
  • Brian BBrian B Posts: 2,071
    Or they are on the back of a 100m epic and I'm just out for a quick blast, so never let your ego get the better of you 8)[/quote]

    I had this last summer when I was on the last 10 miles of an epic 173mile run when a group of cyclists passed me on a very shallow but long climb in the Scottish Borders. I was going extremely slow and had hit the the man with the hammer and I could see the group check out my bike and kit and probably thought 'all the gear and no idea'.

    I do suffer from catch the guy in the distance syndrome. It helps a lot on sportives to help spur you along
    Brian B.
  • I keep getting to that awkward point where you catch up with someone and aren't sure if you're quicker than them or not and then whilst sitting in their wheel taking a breath, you realise your shadow is right in their eyeline and you either have to drop off or go for it.
    Canyon AL Ultimate 9.0
  • AzharAzhar Posts: 247
    if i see a rider in the distance i always chase them down. jst to really test my fitness to see if i can and gives me a good feeling when i do :D ...so, no. you're not the only one. i do it too.
  • lotus49lotus49 Posts: 763
    I chase them down but only if I'm reasonably confident they aren't going to ride past me on the next hill. That's embarrassing.

    If they are catching me, I let them.
  • briantrumpetbriantrumpet Posts: 10,198
    I caught up with an obviously quite strong & keen rider a couple of days ago on the ride home from work - I knew I wouldn't be able to put any sensible distance between him & me if I overtook, so having taken a bit of a pull from him, he accepted the offer of a bit of a pull from me - then we did the next couple of miles swapping, at a lively pace. Very civilised, and quite a nice little work-out while it lasted. If he managed to keep that level of effort up as far as his destination, he's a better cyclist than me.
  • MattyyPMattyyP Posts: 142
    charliew87 wrote:
    I keep getting to that awkward point where you catch up with someone and aren't sure if you're quicker than them or not and then whilst sitting in their wheel taking a breath, you realise your shadow is right in their eyeline and you either have to drop off or go for it.


    This has happened to me before lol! I normally go for a bit of side by side riding/talking for a bit to gauge if I can leave them :lol:
    Specialized Secteur Sport 2011
    B'Twin Rockrider 8 XC
    B'Twin Rockrider 9.1
  • ballysmateballysmate Posts: 15,903
    By all means if you've got a little willy, carry on trying to impress people. As people have stated, you have no idea how far and how fast the guy in front has cycled. What satisfaction is there to be had in racing against someone who doesn't know he is in a race. If you want to race then enter one. At least then you will have a true measure of your own ability/willy. :wink:
  • sancho_uksancho_uk Posts: 141
    Thanks for all the sensible answers..

    I do intend on entering a few races just for fun though..

    With regards to the willy comment although I realise its only banter i do feel the need to point out I never said race.. I said chase someone down.. I never even said pass the person once caught.

    9 times out of 10 because I quite enjoy exploring different routes I will get within a certain distance is said rider is catchable and take a different route than them when nearby avoiding them feeling bad as someone goes past or more like avoiding my own embarrassment when they take me straight away again.

    It doesn't matter what i do to try and boost my ego my willy will always remain small :P
    Focus Cayo 2.0 Ultegra 2012
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,306
    And if anyone wants to pass me, be my guest ... Just as long as you say hello and smile. Don't do it in a way that scares me witless though as some do...
  • carefulcareful Posts: 720
    And if anyone wants to pass me, be my guest ... Just as long as you say hello and smile. Don't do it in a way that scares me witless though as some do...
    +1

    I used to do the chasing thing, but now I've got to the age/performance where there would be no Kudos at all in passing anyone who is so slow that I could catch them. Occasionally though my normal cruising speed brings me up behind an even slower rider. I wont slow my pace, but I hate passing as some clearly think I am racing them. What I do enjoy is a bit of conversation and some company for a while.
  • Wrath RobWrath Rob Posts: 2,918
    Somewhere popular like Richmond Park is great for this kind of thing, there are lots of cyclists of varying abilities to chase or be chased by, but remember there's always a bigger fish. Shortly before the Olympics I was doing a few laps and feeling pretty happy being one of the faster people in the park (well, I'd not been passed by anyone ;) ) when a guy in full Lampre kit, sporting a deep tan, shaved legs and a nonchalant attitude cruised past me looking like he was putting in next to no effort. I contemplated giving chase but he was already at least 5mph faster than me. Uphill. On what looked like a warm up. Chastened, I continued my ride with slightly less pride in my stroke.
    FCN3: Titanium Qoroz.
  • BozmanBozman Posts: 2,518
    I find this similar to the challenges that you're given on motorways: '25 minutes to jcn 15'.

    Like others have said, always make sure you don't use all of your energy chasing them down, plus they might be taking it easy, so as soon as you pass them they're given a wake up call and they pound you into the ground.
  • ShutUpLegsShutUpLegs Posts: 3,522
    Yeah, or sit on your wheel until you submit
  • saprkzzsaprkzz Posts: 592
    I rode into a group of roadies on my MTB at the weekend on my way home from the woods, they were split up a bit, and I managed to overtake the 2nd guy and continued to chase down the guy at the front. Approaching a roundabout I saw a shadow behind of the roadie i had overtaken previously, and I sat there at 20.4mph, managing to drop him and almost catch the front guy, gutted when I had to turn off :(
    Great fun though, I love doing that more on the MTB than my road bike. Their faces are quite amusing! :lol:
  • cyco2cyco2 Posts: 593
    1/ When I've been caught by a young racerist on my MTB or HB I get on their wheel. Then because they've ridden past without saying a thing, I gasp out to them as I get along side,"You just scalped a 70 year old, so well done".

    2/ Very last on a handicap training session with other riders with 3 miles to go a racerist came by at 25mph. I got on his wheel and 'guided' him along the route until we caught and over-took the lead riders. Never saw him again to thank him.

    3/ When out on my race bike I like to chase riders down and always give a few words of encouragement. Since the only one's I've caught so far have had huge bellies I think they've been quite appreciative of my comments. :lol:
    ...................................................................................................

    If you want to be a strong rider you have to do strong things.
    However if you train like a cart horse you'll race like one.
  • TakeTurnsTakeTurns Posts: 1,075
    No -you aren't the only one. Generally it's the new folk who act this way though. Over excited and like to think they're the bomb. It shows that they're ardent -good for them. Plenty of these folks can be found at Richmond Park.

    I just ride according to the plan and not let others be such a bother. I do like a chase on a climb though. Even if the person ahead is stronger. That way I can really push myself into the end zone by making use of the incentive.
  • i'm usually the one getting chased down :P :P

    just happened to be out on a ride one evening and happened across guys that were on a TT i think,there was me huffing an puffing,red faced gasping for air(i had only been out about 3 times before this)and this guy had gone up the road,turned and was coming back again and shot past me like a rocket,fecker scared the censored outta me :lol::lol: anyway as i'd seen a few othr guys going up the other side of the road as well i knew they would be along shortly,so i shot in the next road before my embarrassment got worse :lol::lol:
    Lapierre Aircode 300
    Merida
  • btiratsoobtiratsoo Posts: 204
    Do whatever. As long as you at least say hello when/ if you catch or pass then fill your boots. If you hang about and ride for a while that's a plus point in my opinion, it's a FUN sport after all so a bit of chat even if you go on/ get dropped is nice.
  • Bozman wrote:
    Like others have said, always make sure you don't use all of your energy chasing them down, plus they might be taking it easy, so as soon as you pass them they're given a wake up call and they pound you into the ground.

    This.

    It can be a fun element in your rides, but early on in particular these two considerations are key: you don't want to expend all of your energy doing it (even if it is good for your fitness), and the person that you are overtaking might be intentionally training in HR zone 1. [willy waving]I cannot deny however that it is satisfying when they are clearly really going for it but simply not as fast as me. ;)[/willy waving]
  • In Richmond Park I like to use the person in front as someone to set my pace as I've only been riding for about 6 months. If I'm finding it easy then I'll eventually pass them but I wouldn't say I kill myself trying to pass every rider that I see ahead of me.
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